December 1, 1999
I’m determined to decorate this space for the holiday season as I decorate the house, even if it’s only an “I had a pork chop for dinner” post. Actually, dinner tonight was hot roast beef sandwiches with mashed potatoes and gravy, a meal of childhood comfort food if there ever was one!
But that’s what this season does — it sends us reaching back through the years to the things that made Christmas magical, to a time when other people did all the work and you just waited through what you thought were endless weeks to open sealed boxes that held true surprises.
“Are you ready for Christmas?” people will ask, and I’m at as much of a loss to answer as I am when they ask me what I’m writing. A Jewish friend told me that she has learned to respond with a cheerful “Why yes, I am!” It’s not untrue, because she’s as ready any day in December as she was in June, and anyway, people don’t really want to know if you’re ready, they want to exclaim about how they’re not.
There are, of course, two kinds of readiness for me. There’s readiness for the Outer Season, the one that comes wrapped and beribboned and smelling of cinnamon and pine cones, the one too often fraught with societal expectations. And there’s the Inner Season, the one that calls for silence to hear the cry of something new being born. Tonight finds me not in the place I wanted to be on either road.
But at least I wrote this much. That’s a start.
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